Member of:
Justia Lawyer Rating
American Association for Justice
Union Plus

Manhattan Probate Property

When you pass away your property will be distributed to your beneficiaries according to your wishes as expressed in your will. However, your will applies only to property that is considered probate property. Probate property is personal property such as your clothes, car, and furniture, as well as your bank account. However, most people own a variety of types of property, some of which is not classified as probate property. The distinction between probate and non-probate property is significant as probate property and non-probate property are treated differently when it comes to distributing to beneficiaries. To learn more about the distinction between probate and non-probate property, contact an experienced Manhattan probate property lawyer. Estate planning is complicated. In order to ensure that your property is distributed to the people of your choosing, in the manner of your choosing, it is critical that you have a comprehensive estate plan that takes into consideration your goals, your family situation, your financial situation, and the types of property in your estate.

Probate property

Most property individually owned will be considered part of a decedent’s probate estate and will be distributed once the executor or estate administrator winds up the decedent’s estate. Such property will be distributed according to the terms of the decedent’s will. If there is no will, then the property will be distributed based on the rules of intestate succession.

  • Real estate that is individually owned or that you own as a tenant in common.
  • Personal property, such as clothes, furniture, collectibles, jewelry, and automobiles.
  • Bank accounts that are individually owned
  • Any other property that is not classified as non-probate property

It is important to understand that any property that is in your probate estate is subject probate. This is the case whether or not the property is mentioned in your will. If you would like to minimize the impact of probate on your estate, then discuss with an experienced Manhattan probate property attorney estate planning strategies.

Non-probate property

Non-probate property is property that by its nature will pass to a specific beneficiary immediately upon your death. You cannot change who gets such property through your will. Examples of non-probate property include:

  • Joint tenancy property is property that passes to the other joint owners upon the death of an owner. You cannot will your interest in such property to a beneficiary of your choosing.
  • Payable on death financial accounts and transfer on death financial accounts are not subject to probate. The balance goes to the person designated.
  • Property that you transfer to a living trust will be distributed to the named beneficiaries according to the terms of the trust. To learn more about the benefits of setting up a living trust, contact a probate property attorney in Manhattan.
  • Proceeds of life insurance policies will go to the beneficiaries that you designate.

Even if property is non-probate, there are circumstances that may result in the property becoming part of the probate estate. For example, if the person who is the beneficiary on your POD bank account predeceases you, the bank account will then be part of your probate estate. Similarly, if a designated beneficiary is deemed incapacitated or is a minor, then the probate judge will have to determine the appropriate way to distribute the property.

Contact the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates

Estate planning is complicated. Proper estate planning requires a full understanding of which of your property will be considered probate property and the consequences of property being probate property. To ensure proper planning, discuss your estate concerns with an experienced probate property attorney serving Manhattan. The staff at the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates has years of experience representing clients in estate planning and estate litigation matters. Contact us at 800-696-9529 to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We represent clients in the following locations: the Bronx, Brooklyn, Long Island, Manhattan, Nassau County, Queens, Staten Island, Suffolk County and Westchester County.

Client Reviews
Mr. Bilkis handled both my father and mother's estate issues through very difficult times he was compassionate kind and understanding. In fact the whole firm showed great empathy. Despite the emotional hard time we were having that quickly and efficiently handle all the matters that were necessary to get us the result we desired. Can't recommend them enough. B.B.
From the very first phone call to Stephen Bilkis' office, the staff was extremely polite and helpful in assisting me. Mr. Bilkis was honest and upfront with me from the beginning in what he projected the outcome of my case would be; in the end we got better results than either of us anticipated. He was very genuine and compassionate in understanding my situation and how this legal matter could effect not only myself but my family as well. I highly recommend this law firm and will most definitely continue using them for any future legal needs. Jarrett
Stephen has handled numerous estate matters, criminal matters and family court matters effectively and with a goal-oriented approach. He gets great results and is a results-oriented attorney. Dustin